Mayor Bloomberg and the Department of Transportation are hoping that a new website will solve one of the biggest headaches facing New York drivers. No, not bicycles but constantly ripped up roads. "We’re going to fix something that has aggravated New Yorkers for years, with good reason," Bloomberg said at a press conference yesterday. "That is, why do our streets get torn up, repaved and then sometimes torn up all over again [after] for another project?" If the new site, the Street Works Manual (accompanying PDF here), works as advertised then companies like ConEd will start syncing up their street construction with other companies and city agencies. And that's not all!
DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said at the same event that the Manuel brings with it a new set of rules that should make the city more money (fines for ripping up streets without a permit have nearly been doubled and companies who want to dig up a recently paved street will now have to pay a higher permit fee, even if the work is for an emergency) but also make regular people's lives easier. As far as the DOT is concerned going forward a freshly paved roads should remain untouched for five years.
Companies can track where construction will be going here and then coordinate, or postpone, their own efforts on the new site. "The streets are the foundation for the city’s infrastructure," Sadik-Khan said, "and this landmark agreement will help reduce the toll of construction on our streets and keep them open for business." Great! But let's just see this baby in action before we all get too excited.